This is an article about sea turtles and why they are endangered.
Turtles are some of the slowest animals on land. But in the ocean, sea turtles swim quickly through the water. They begin their lives on the beach. They hatch from eggs buried in the sand. As soon as they are born, the little turtles, called “hatchlings,” hurry back into the ocean. They do not return to the beach until they are ready to nest.Even though sea turtles live in the water, they need air to breathe. They must swim up to the surface to take in air. Most snack on jellyfish and other ocean creatures. All sea turtles are endangered. This means that there are not many of them left.
Sea turtles face many dangers, especially from humans. People take over turtles’ habitats by building hotels and houses on the beach. Some people also bother nests when they are playing on the beaches. This makes it difficult for mother turtles to find safe places to dig nests and lay their eggs in the sand.
In some areas of the world sea turtles are hunted by people. Their eggs are eaten for food. Their shells are used to make jewelry and even guitars. Some suntan lotions are made with turtle oil.
People can hurt sea turtles without even knowing it. Dumping garbage in the ocean, like plastic bags and balloons, really hurts sea turtles. To a turtle, a floating plastic bag or balloon can look like food. Sea turtles get very sick when they eat this kind of trash.
Many people help to protect sea turtles. Volunteers watch the beaches to protect turtle nests and eggs. Scientists put special tags on some sea turtles to track them. The tags allow scientists to learn more about where the turtles go.
You too can help the sea turtles survive. Learn more about what is hurting them. When you’re at the beach, be careful around any place the turtles may be nesting. Make sure you don’t leave any trash behind. Don’t throw garbage into the ocean. Together we can help make sure sea turtles are around for a long time.
- Where do sea turtles begin their lives?
- What are little turtles called?
- Why are humans a danger to sea turtles?
- How can you help the sea turtles survive?